Saudi Woman Dies In Car Crash After Defying Kingdom's Driving Ban

A woman who defied the ban on female driving in Saudi Arabia died in a car crash on Thursday, according to local media.

The woman, who is described as being in her 20s, was driving when she lost control of her vehicle, according to the local Al-Jazeera daily website.

The woman was killed after she crashed into the wall of a youth club in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia's capital city, and the car burst into flames, the site said.

Saudi Arabia is ultra-conservative and it is the only country in the world where women are prohibited from driving, the Agence France-Presse reports.

It's still unusual to see women driving in the kingdom, but they have been getting behind the wheel in desert regions away from Riyadh.

This is not the first time a fatal motor vehicle accident has occurred involving a female driver.

In 2012, a woman who had also protested against the driving ban was taken to a hospital to be treated for injuries and her companion died after their car overturned in the northern Hael province, according to The Independent.

A similar incident happened in November 2010 when a Saudi woman was killed along with three of her 10 female passengers.

Women in the kingdom who can afford to hire drivers do so, while others must depend on male relatives to drive them. They also need permission from a male guardian to travel, work and marry.

Women's rights activists often come together to defy the driving ban and encourage other women to post online videos of themselves driving.

According to the Daily Mail, Manal al-Sherif, a 32-year-old computer security consultant, who was part of the first driving campaign, was arrested and detained for 10 days in May for uploading a YouTube video of herself driving around Khobar.


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